Monday, March 12, 2012

Jesus Our Savior

Jesus Our Savior

And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 1 John 4:14

Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you,which you received and on which you have taken your stand.By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you.Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:1-2

        When I first became a Christian many people told me that believing in God was a crutch.  Real independent people could look at things and say ‘We can fix it’ or ‘I can deal with it’.  The ‘idea’ of God was a crutch for the weak.  Our response to this was often to say, ”If God is a crutch, give me two!”  The fact that Jesus is my savior is becoming a fact that encourages me nearly every day.
          Jesus our savior. We need saving. Why? Why do we need someone to save us? From what?  From our sins, our human nature.  Have you ever read the book The Lord of the Flies ?  Under this veneer of ‘civilization’ lurks a Hitler, a Pol Pot, all done in the name of order.  Philosophers have told us that to survive as a species we must have a despot in control.  Naturally speaking they are right.  One problem.  Who picks who is in charge?  All systems fail at this point. Everyone who has tried to escape their nature knows what I am talking about.  Ever try to stop sinning?  Hurting someone by your behavior?  If you have, you know you need help.  Ever try to figure out God?  Have you had a broken relationship with God?  Jesus provided for our salvation on every level. Do we need a Savior? Look at the world! Can man solve the problems? One day we will be offered a solution, but without Jesus. It will be a deception. The only way man will bring peace is by killing off the opposition until only one is left. Sin is like that.
          The Father sent Jesus to be the Savior of the world.  Yet it is evident that not all are saved, but only those who believe.  This saving must be received.  Remember all those verses in the Gospels where Jesus said “Your faith has saved you”?  Like the 10 lepers who were all healed.  Only the one who returned to give glory to God was made whole.
          Why do we need a savior? Because we cannot save ourselves.  We are unable to know God unless He reveals himself. He can only be 'seen' by those who humble themselves, admit their sin, are honest about themselves before God and man, admitting that we need saving.  “To the humble who know their littleness, call on God with contrite hearts, and follow his will (Ps. 24:5; 34:6; 119:155), God grants his general help and salvation.”
          OT theme: false gods cannot save – go to your block of wood, see if it will save you.  Is 43:11-12, 44:6-20  “He who carves the Buddha does not worship it.”
  • Jeremiah 14:8 O Hope of Israel, its Savior in times of distress,
  • Isaiah 63:8-9 He said, “Surely they are my people, sons who will not be false to me”; and so he became their Savior. 9 In all their distress he too was distressed, and the angel of his presence saved them. In his love and mercy he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old.
  • 1 Samuel 14:6 Jonathan said to his young armor-bearer, “Come, let’s go over to the outpost of those uncircumcised fellows. Perhaps the LORD will act in our behalf. Nothing can hinder the LORD from saving, whether by many or by few.”
  • 2 Samuel 22:3 my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. He is my stronghold, my refuge and my savior— from violent men you save me.
  • Psalm 68:19 Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.
  • Psalm 106:10 He saved them from the hand of the foe; from the hand of the enemy he redeemed them.
  • Psalm 107:13 Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress.
  • Romans 5:9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!
  • Psalm 39:8 Save me from all my transgressions; do not make me the scorn of fools.
  • Psalm 72:13 He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death.
  • Psalm 89:48 What man can live and not see death, or save himself from the power of the grave?
  • Matthew 1:21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.
  • Mark 8:35 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it.
  • Luke 1:77 (John) to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins,

So what do we need to be saved from?  Sin, distress, enemies, death, God’s wrath, for starters.  Saved from sin, what does this mean?  We hurt people when we sin.  God can save us from that by first of all teaching us about forgiveness and then by the fruit of the Spirit leading us in a life away from sin.

Distress?  Why not shorten it to a more common word: stress.  Anyone have a problem with stress?  Jesus can save you from stress.  How you might ask?  Through faith in Him and His promises.  Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.  Nothing.  Cast all your anxiety on Him for He cares for you.  I remember the time where I was in great distress because I could not break off a relationship where the young lady had obviously and repeatedly told me that the relationship was over.  I was in deeper than I could handle by counseling or self discipline.  God shouted the words “Give her up” inside me and it was over.  I was delivered.

Enemies?  War?  Many Christians have been martyred through the centuries.  The peace the Lord gives is not the kind of peace that the world tries to pass off as peace. Their peace is purely circumstantial.  Ours can never be shaken.  We know that death and all these bad things that happen to people here on earth is not the end of the story.  Our story will not end with the cessation of our mortal bodies.  Our view is much bigger than one confined to this transitory temporal world. 

The fact that Jesus is our savior needs to impact us more than just when we first were saved.  Jesus wasn’t our savior for only one day.  He is our savior, today and every day!

For he says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation. 2 Corinthians 6:2

If now is the day of salvation, this means that God is our savior today.  What do you need?  Are you in distress?  Have enemies?  Are ill?  Believe on the Lord, He is your savior. 

1 comment:

Kathleen Mc said...

Thank you Steven...I re-read this, this morning...God blessed me with your words...I needed this. For some reason after almost a year and half it is just now sinking in and coming to the surface that I am starting my life over again...I have been having a bit of a hard time processing that fact...I know he is calling me to new things in which I am grateful. Blessings my friend, Kathleen